Thinking of Biking

 Thinking of biking?

By reading this you are taking the first steps towards a fun, healthy and cheap way to get around Ottawa. There are lots of great reasons to get into biking. Our favourites include:

  • Getting some physical activity
  • Being 'green'
  • Affordable
  • Reduces stress
  • Seeing Ottawa from the view of a bike is priceless

Many of us have heard plenty of reasons not to bike. So let's take on some of those biking myths.

  • Biking gear is expensive - biking will cost some money but compared to driving there is no contest. Buying a bike, helmet and safety gear cost just a fraction of the price of a car, gas, maintenance, parking and insurance. Luckily, Ottawa is home to many second hand bike stores and the used market is always full of quality goods. Still hesitant? Try borrowing a bike first, from Ottawa's many bike share programs.
  • Biking is slow - the average commute time in Ottawa is 26 minutes. On a bike you would be able to go from Ottawa U to Carleton or Carleton to Algonquin in that time. Map out your commute using Google Map's bike icon!
  • I am out of shape - the first time on a bike may leave you sore, but it gets better every time you ride. It is a clear sign that you are getting in better shape! Coasting on a bike is a great way to take a break while getting to your destination!
  • I will get sweaty - This is hard to avoid but biking at a slower pace can feel more like a stroll instead of a jog. You are in control. Try to start your commute in the morning when it is cooler.
 Want to bike more?

Are you biking once or twice a week? Looking for more? Here are some tips to help you bike more often.

  • Take a course - mixing with traffic can seem scary but a course may make you feel more at ease;
  • DIY maintenance - save time and money by doing basic maintenance yourself! Many local bike shops run courses and the City has installed a number of bike repair stations
  • Extend your cycling season - Just like getting on your bike for the first time, cold weather cycling may feel daunting but it gets easier every time you ride. The City has a plowed winter cycling network and provides great tips to get started;
  • Find friends to ride with - Ottawa has a vibrant biking community, whether you are looking to compete, fix up your bike, or just get together with people who bike there is a group for you!

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